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Top Things To Do In Jacksonville

Jacksonville is nestled between beach and forest, with the Outer Banks nearby and the Croatan National Forest just a short drive away. The New River offers countless watersports and cruises, and the little hamlets in the surrounding downtown areas host dozens of delicious restaurants, including the famous Jeff’s Burgers, Dogs and Shakes. There is a deep military tradition in the city, so be sure to catch the many memorials and parks in the area. Jacksonville is a great place to discover nature and historic attractions.

Jacksonville has considerable southern charm, where barbeque and war museums abound. But there is so much more—from wineries nestled in the nearby National Forest to kayak adventures on the New River, the diversity of activities near Jacksonville are astounding.

The best things to do near Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Learning to surf at the popular Surf City Surf Camp
  • Getting a taste of small-batch southern comfort at Walton’s Distillery
  • Visiting Hammock’s Beach State Park for some hiking or island camping
  • Chowing down on a fantastic meal at Jeff’s Burgers, Dogs and Shakes
  • Checking out the historical CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center

Whether you’re a tourist in your own town or experiencing Jacksonville for the first time, there are many must-see attractions to visit in the area.

The best tourist attractions near Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Explore the breathtaking North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Park
  • Take in the historical and natural beauty of the Tryon Palace
  • Get nautical and discover the North Carolina Maritime Museum
  • Shop ‘til you drop in the many retail shops at the Jacksonville Mall
  • Take a walk, watch the sunset, and enjoy the views at Surf City Pier

Jacksonville has amenities to enjoy every day, as most cities often do. There are excellent cinemas to catch the latest flick, and cheap treats to satisfy your cravings on a budget.

Fun things to do today in Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Catch the latest movie at Carmike Patriot Cinemas
  • Stop in to Thig’s BBQ house for some delicious cheap eats
  • Wander the wilderness and take a hike on Brice Creek Trail
  • Grab some drinks and check out the live music at Nick’s Blacksheep Tavern
  • Visit the Pelletir House for an engaging history lesson

The Jacksonville area nightlife is vibrant and diverse. No matter your speed, there are fantastic activities to experience at night everyone.

Nighttime activities near Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Sing your heart out at the Hideaway Lounge karaoke
  • Test your smarts at Angry Ginger Irish Pub during Tuesday and Thursday night trivia
  • Immerse yourself in the peaceful atmosphere at Sahara Hookah Lounge
  • Sip some cocktails and dance the night away at Salt Ultra Lounge
  • Grab a flight of beers at Salty Turtle Beer Company

On those days where you just need to lay back and relax, you are in for a treat. Check out the many small art galleries in the Jacksonville area, or indulge in a pampering at the spa.

Best indoor activities near Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Visit the quiet yet stunning Thurston Art Gallery.
  • Treat yourself to a day of pampering at the Inis Spa.
  • Spend a day of wine tasting at Huffman Winery.
  • Get creative with an evening at Painting With a Twist.
  • Enjoy a tasty, relaxing meal at Ducks Bar and Grille.

Woods and sea abound in the Jacksonville area. For active types, there are hiking and biking trails, kayak and paddle board rentals, horseback riding, and surf lessons.

Active outdoor attractions in Jacksonville, NC include:

  • Wander the beautiful memorials at Lejeune Memorial Gardens
  • Rent some kayaks at Paddle North Carolina and explore the New River
  • Go on a horseback riding adventure with the folks at Equine Country
  • Tee off with some friends at Bear Path Golf Club
  • Enjoy the ocean on a stand up and paddle board at North Topsail Beach